Grace in a Cancel Culture

November 15, 2022

“He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; He took it away, nailing it to the cross.” Colossians 2:14

You don’t hear much about grace these days. Quite the opposite, in fact. 

We live in a cancel culture that is quick to cancel people out for even the slightest mistake or even for something they did in their distant past.  

Imagine for a moment if the Lord treated us this way. (It’s a scary thought, isn’t it?)

The psalmist rightfully says, “If you, O Lord, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand?” (Psalm 130:3,4). 

Who could stand? None of us. That’s who. 

We all deserve to be canceled out forever, unable to even approach His throne, much less stand before it. But in an extraordinary act of love, the Lord offers us something very different – forgiveness through Christ. 

In the scripture above, the Apostle Paul explains that the Lord canceled the “written code” that “opposed us.” 

What is this “written code?” Most scholars agree Paul is referring to the righteous requirements of the Old Testament law. And no matter how hard we try or how good of a person we think we are, none of us can ever measure up to the perfect standard of God’s law.  We fall woefully short.

So, we have a problem on our hands.  And a serious one at that. 

We stand guilty before God, exposed as unworthy sinners, carrying a massive debt that we could never afford to pay.

But instead of canceling us, the Lord cancels what stands against us. Instead of wiping us off the face of the earth, the Lord “cancels” or ‘wipes away’ the record of our sins. Jesus takes our debt, “nails it to the cross,”  paying the balance with His life.   

This is the most mind-blowing, joy-inducing, hope-filled act of grace in the history of the universe.

What is grace?

Here’s one of the best definitions of grace I’ve ever heard: 

Grace is God’s favor lavished on the utterly undeserving.

And every one of us falls into the category of the utterly undeserving.  The more we realize how underserving we really are, the more beautiful God’s grace becomes.

Maybe you’ve never trusted in Jesus as your Savior and truly received His grace. Don’t wait any longer. Confess your sins. Believe in Jesus and begin to follow Him as your Lord. 

Or maybe…because you’ve heard about grace hundreds of times…it’s become stale, old hat. 

I’m reminded of the words of theologian Richard Niebuhr, “The great Christian revolutions come not by the discovery of something that was not known before. They happen when somebody takes radically something that was always there.”   

The grace of God has always been there, for it is part of His eternal, unchanging nature.  

But what would it look like for us to take grace radically?  

Well, for one thing, we wouldn’t just carry on as normal.  Some things would start to change. No matter our circumstances, we’d wake up grateful to be alive. Our belief in grace would impact how we behave at home, at work, and out in the community.  We’d be the kindest, most gracious folks around. 

So, why not start today?

Allow God’s amazing grace to start a revolution inside your heart, overflowing into your life and into the lives of those around you. 

Our world, this cancel culture in which we live, needs the message of grace now more than ever before.

Written by Jonathan Munson, Executive Director, RFTH